There is nothing in this mail which says that you do not qualify for a state pension.Interesting link P O'Neill, thanks. There may yet be hope. I'll follow that up.
Edit: I just dug this out from my email records. This is what Welfare.ie wrote to me a couple of years ago:
"Under current legislation a person needs at least 520 paid contributions and a yearly average of 10 to qualify for minimum rate pension.
A yearly average of 48-52 is required for maximum rate pension.
Yearly average is calculated by dividing the number of years from your date of entry into insurable employment to the year before your 66th birthday into the total contributions paid and credited."
I presume a 'contribution' is your monthly deduction from salary. So you need 520 months salary for a minimum rate pension.
That's 43 years of contributions to get a basic minimum pension. I worked in Ireland for 30 years - hence what I was told seems correct.
Contributions are paid weekly- not monthly. If you worked for 30 years, you have already about 1560 contributions. This will give you already 3/4 of the full state pension under the new TCA system. The old average system will be history as of next autumn.